Pumping for two is not easy. My twins are fraternal so they have vastly different feeding needs and it gets to be overwhelming at times. Because of this I’ve accumulated a few different pumps that all work toward the same goal but are able to keep me active and able to keep up with the schedule that I now need to maintain.
MOSFiATA Rechargeable Nursing Breastfeeding Pump
The MOSFiATA happens to be a new addition to my collection. We’ve added this one to our routine as we plan on taking a few trips to visit family this summer and we want to be sure we can still feed them while on the go. So far using this has had a slight learning curve. I haven’t figured out the best settings for my usage yet. The suction is very jarring when it switches from the stimulation mode to the massage/expression mode. It caught me off guard and left me feeling a bit of a ripping pulling sensation. Not ideal. After that I am always sure to use some of my Earth Mama Nipple Butter. It made a HUGE difference when using that pump. I still haven’t gotten it to output as much as my Spectra… but who am I kidding the spectra is fabulous and it’s doubtful that any pump will ever be as magnificent as that one.
Freemie Collection Cups
Ok these collection cups are a total game changer! I wish I’d known about these when I had my first child. They are awesome. They each hold eight ounces so you could pump 16 ounces in one sitting. I have pumped 16 ounces on occasion and had to stop and empty and store the fore milk… which I hated doing. My first reason for disliking this is that the hind milk is primarily on one bottle while the fore milk is now in the other. That would be fine if you have one baby and you know that they will get both parts eventually. With two you never know who’s going to get what bottle and if one baby accidentally ends up getting more fore milk bottles that day it may lead to a bit more spit-up as it has with my babies. The one negative I do have to call out is that the measurements aren’t accurate on mine. The milk will show at the 2oz line, but when I pour it into my Medela bottle it will show as 3oz. Frustratingly enough it seems Medela is one of the few brands that has ounces and mL printed on the bottle rather than just raised plastic. The later is so much harder to read when I’m sleep deprived and trying to carefully fill bottles into specific portion sizes. I should also note that the Freemie cups have comments all over the web stating that back flow is an issue. I personally want to multitask without worry so buying the back flow attachments for the spectra and then using them with all my pumps just made sense.
Finding these inserts has been amazing! I have had the worst time finding the correct sized nipple shields. For some reason most pumps come with 25 and 28mm shields. Those are too large for me and pull too much of my areola into the funnel. Very painful. I found these and I can transfer them from one set of pump flanges to the next with a great seal. I am so incredibly comfortable and happy now. I’ve been able to increase my milk production to levels I didn’t think I’d be able to make it to. Which has allowed me to exclusively breastfeed/pump for my twins! That to me is the most ideal situation I could have had.
Spectra S2 Breast Pump Hospital Grade
I am obsessed with this pump. With my first baby I purchased a Medela. I didn’t do any research I just bought what was in stock on the Target shelves and selected what was allowed by my insurance. This time around I found out from our lactation consultant after birth that I could purchase my pump online and have the medical supplier ship me the pump. Cue the sound of a sunny morning with chirping birds! Before the help of this woman I was having quite a difficult time finding this machine. I was able to get the Spectra S1 from the hospital’s medical device provider, but that’s not what I wanted. I had read so many great things about this specific pump and I wanted it. And it’s pink. Sure that may not matter to most but for me it was an attractive addition. The Medela uses a constant suction. Almost as if it were one long pull or drag. After a year of having the Medela yank on my nipples I was done. And this fits the bill. The first time I used it was spectacular. I pumped without using nipple cream/butter. Most people would say that’s a dangerous road to tread. I had nothing to worry about though. It started up and it was on the lowest setting and it was quiet and the suction reminds me of a ripple in water or a sound wave. The actual sound of the machine reminded me of a bass drum. Not gunna lie… kinda made me feel like a badass. I had my own little warrior beat to aid my journey. Also, if you get the Freemie cups and the connection kit you can go completely discretely hands free!
Maymom Tubing Kit
In order to use my Freemie Cups with my Spectra these were a must. The Spectra needs the back flow protectors to maintain it cleanliness. Also if you milk/condensation get into the tubing it can destroy your machine. I should also note that I used this tubing with my MOSFiATA as without the back flow protection I almost had milk get into the machine and removed the tubing with the milk only 3 inches from entering the pump…not good. So, yes, this tubing is a necessity for me and for those who don’t need it for the Spectra it may be a good idea anyways.
Medela Hand Pump
I didn’t anticipate needing a pump immediately after the twins were born. I planned to wait to establish a good connection with them first. Worst idea ever. Since they were premature they had issues latching and lost too much weight in the hospital. My husband had to go out the day we got home and pick up this. I wrinkled my nose at it when I saw it. I didn’t request anything specific. He said that it was all they had. So I gritted my teeth and surrendered myself to what I expected to be a very painful recurrence. To my surprise the ability for me to control the speed and amount of “pulling” actually has made this hand pump one of my favorite go-to devices. It’s quick, easy, and requires no charging. I love bringing it on date nights.
General Breast Feeding Tips
- Tandem Feeding is ridiculously hard. If you want to tandem feed I hope any other children you have are old enough to care for themselves for 30 minutes at a time. I had a 3 1/2 year old to try to contend with while caring for my newborn twins…and a c-section recovery. There was no way I was going to find time for all of that and a luxuriously long feeding schedule. Feel free to give up that idea.
- Babies stomachs are the size of cherries when they are born keep that in mind when you’re pressuring yourself to feed both babies the moment they are born.
- Supplementation is not the enemy. I was so “breast is best” with my first born. I nursed my son until he was about a year and 2 months? Somewhere around there. Bringing that mentality into the birth process with my twins was the worst mindset ever. They were loosing weight too quickly after they were born. I thought it was my fault for not producing enough milk. Come to find out I was likely making plenty but I very likely was never going to be able to keep up with their weight loss. I didn’t know that until well after. Had I known that before they were born I would have not been so hesitant to use formula those first few days. I’m definitely on the “fed is best” band wagon but I also still feel like every mom should try breastfeeding considering the benefits.
- A twin nursing pillow is a must. I tried to nurse without one to see if I could do it…I looked like a crazy pretzel. And If I moved even an inch one or both would be unlatched. Possibly in a very painful manner.
- Logging water intake is a big task and fankly one I don’t have time for. My solution: Drink twice what you pump. For example I pumped 5 oz of milk, now I need to fill up a glass with 10 ounces of water. This works best when you have a water bottle or mason jar with measures on it.
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